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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2004, 07:19 AM Thread Starter
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I have 3 saltwater tanks and I think it is time to setup a planted tank. I have a few size options for my first tank. I could do a 20gallon long, a 2.5gallon, a 10gallon( I see these are very popular), or a very old acrylic HEX tank approx 3-5 gallons. The 2.5 is the only tank I would already have lighting for, 2 13watt pc's. I wanted to know what the best size tank to start would be, in all of your opinions. Costs would be a factor but I dont think that these sizes would pose any HUGE cost differences, does anyone think otherwise? I wanted to plant fairly heavily and have a few fish but not to many if the tank could not hold them.
I do not want to use CO2 tanks, but I have no problems with using DIY methods.
Oh, and I really only wanted to use HOB filters. Does this pose any problems?
Thanks for any input you guys could give.
JJ
BTW the 2.5 is an old salt tank. As far as I knew this would cause no problems if thoroughly cleaned.
I hope this post was remotely coherent, its like 3:30...
Thanks again.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2004, 09:28 AM
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Personally, I'd do the 20g long or the 10g as a second choice. I like the wider 20g long as it can fit a better aquascape, imho.

To use what you have, You could use the 2x13w on the 10g for decent lighting for a low to low-medium(if they have high-end reflectors) light tank. DIY CO2 would work just fine on these smaller tanks.

Other than that, I'd go with the 20g long with some new lighting in at least the 50-60w range for most medium light plants. DIY CO2 is still a valid option here. I have a AHSupply 55w PC kit as well as a 20w NO fixture for lower morning & night light.

Aquaclear HOB filters would work great, especially if you have any on-hand.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2004, 02:40 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks man,
How about if I went with a 96watt PC on the 20L. I found a ballast over at www.hellolights.com for like 30$. I already have one aquaclear 150. It was used on the 2.5. For some reason I think that is not near enough flow, what do you think.
I have not thought a whole lot about fish for the 20L yet. Anything that you think would do really well? I was looking at angels, corydoras, dwarf puffers, and hatchets.
I have a feeling not all of these would ever fit in this tank but I was unsure.
As for plants I REALLY like the
ChainSword - Narrow Leaf, Java Fern, Variegated Japanese Dwarf Rush, and the Ruffle Plant. All I found over at Liveaquaria.com.
Are there any fish or plants in this list that would not do well?
Thanks again
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2004, 07:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reefan
Thanks man,
How about if I went with a 96watt PC on the 20L. I found a ballast over at www.hellolights.com for like 30$. I already have one aquaclear 150. It was used on the 2.5. For some reason I think that is not near enough flow, what do you think.
I have not thought a whole lot about fish for the 20L yet. Anything that you think would do really well? I was looking at angels, corydoras, dwarf puffers, and hatchets.
I have a feeling not all of these would ever fit in this tank but I was unsure.
As for plants I REALLY like the
ChainSword - Narrow Leaf, Java Fern, Variegated Japanese Dwarf Rush, and the Ruffle Plant. All I found over at Liveaquaria.com.
Are there any fish or plants in this list that would not do well?
Thanks again
I would start off with just a 55 or 65 watt PC over a 20L tank. 96 watts would be way too much and very hard to keep in balance. If you find that the one aquaclear is not enough, you could always add another or just upgrade it later on. As far as your fish pics, angels: no, corydoras: yes, dwarf puffers: depends on what else you really want to keep, hatchets: no. Reasons being: angels will get way to big for a 20L, if you were going to try a 20H, then maybe you could keep a pair. Puffers may be nippy towards other fish, especially those with long flowing fins. Hatchets would be happier in a longer tank, they like some swimming room, they are also jumpers, so you need a tight-fitting cover. Chain sword and Java fern are good choices for your tank. What substrate are you planning on using? The other two plants I'm not even sure if they are aquarium plants, they might be bog plants, but I'm not sure, someone else might be more familiar with them.

Hope that helps.

George


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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2004, 10:27 PM Thread Starter
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>96 watts would be way too much < LOL This is different than reefing! I am starting a experiment that will have 150watt over about 4 gallons! I love the concept of to much light. My dad will too, he pays the electric bill.
I knew dwarf puffers can be aggressive but I figured if I planted heavily and had nothing much smaller they would be ok. I will probably use the old aquaclear150 and add another later on.
As for substrate I hoped to use a sand mixture with Flourite. I was thinking like 2 1/4 inches of Flourite with sand mixed in on the last top 1". For a total depth of about 3 1/4".
BUT now I'm reading a lot about eco-complete. So I was thinking mix a bag of eco-complete then Flourite then some sand. Do you think that would have good results?
Thanks again
I'm going to look for some more suitable fish I like for the tank.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2004, 10:43 PM
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try the 20 Long and 1 55 watt CF and 2 13 watts CF for the sides [the 55 doesn't take up the length of the tank] or you shoudl have the 13's on the sides to light it better
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2004, 10:52 PM
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I am starting a experiment that will have 150watt over about 4 gallons!
Nuttin wrong with that if the light is about 2 feet over the tank top... LOL
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2004, 11:53 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks fishyboy I have some 13watters I can use.
Buck, the tank is going to be a reef tank, so I think I can do well with it if I can just keep the temps low. I hope to have EXPLOSIVE growth. My dad thinks I'm insane. But he thought that with the 3 400watt metal halides over the 210gallon.
I have been reading more about substrate and think I could try and use the kitty litter method. I have not decided yet.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-16-2004, 08:33 PM
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You can run that much light but I had nothing but a 136 Watt fixture to put over a planted tank. So I used extended legs and added about 4 inches to the height of them and used a glass top. According to my lux meter (Reef club has a loaner in Atlanta) I dropped lighting effiency down by over 10 times at the bottom of the tank, just by raising 4 inches. Works great, and my red cacomba and glosso seems to like it. I did have to plant my ferns under the driftwood though.

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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-17-2004, 12:06 AM Thread Starter
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Well I ordered a 55watt ballast here, http://www.hellolights.com/cfnanbalkit2.html.
I thought 24$ was a great price.
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